The Week Unpeeled
Anti-US protests at embassies and elsewhere in mostly Arab states from South Asia to North Africa to the Mideast dominated the news front over the weekend, motivated by a video made in the US that “mocked” (WSJ) the Prophet Muhammad and seemed to ignite Islam extremists. The pope traveled to Beirut in an unrelated peace-keeping tour, the first papal visit in 15 years.
In other news and places:
- The SEC fined the New York Stock Exchange, which agreed to pay the $5 million penalty extremely promptly, for allegedly providing information to some customers ahead of others;
- USA Today underwent a total makeover on Friday, taking cues from the web, including printing comments from readers on Twitter and Facebook; its new web site was launched over the weekend;
- US, UK and European markets soared after the US Federal Reserve announced it will be buying mortgage-backed securities to provide liquidity to the markets and keep interest rates low in a bid to spur the economy and help the job market, a rare move by the Fed to directly admit and act that it is trying to fix the employment picture;
- The Dow ended the week 2.2 percent higher at 13,593;
- US Treasury announced that it was selling at least $18 billion of its AIG shares;
- European ministers were considering giving Greece some more time to meet its bailout commitments;
- Figures released by the Office for National Statistics, showed UK unemployment fell by 7,000 in August to 2.59m;
- Apple unveiled the iphone5 which is thinner, faster and lighter than predecessors. The device will retail at $199 on a two-year contract;
- Everything Everywhere, Britain's biggest mobile operator, announced it will have “superfast” 4G data networks up and running in the UK by the end of the year;
- The Olympics and Paralympics finished with a big parade through Central London, where more than a million people lined the streets to acknowledge more than 800 sportsmen and women; and
- US TV news personality launched her new daytime talk show, “Katie,” apparently trying to fill Oprah’s shoes.